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Spread Betting on Soccer

Betting Strategies, Featured, Football Betting Tips, Spread Betting | Article posted on May 6th, 2013

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Spread Betting on Soccer




Introduction to Spread Betting on Soccer


Spread betting is a relatively new form of betting but has quickly grown in popularity as it gives bettors the opportunity to win more the more right they are. In traditional betting profits are determined by the price taken when a bet is struck.

Spread betting gives the bettor the chance to win more the nearer their prediction is to the outcome and the more they disagree with the market makers. This form of betting also lends itself to in-play trading. A position can be closed to guarantee a profit or minimise a loss.

The concept of spread betting is based on a spread of results for an event. If bettors think the outcome will be higher than the spread they buy. If the bettors think the outcome will be lower than the spread they sell. The spread quote consists of two numbers and the difference between the higher and lower number is the spread

The nearer the outcome is to the prediction the greater the profits. The further away the outcome is to the prediction the greater the losses. Based on the same theory profits can be maximised and losses can be minimised depending on the outcome and the spread.


The History of Spread Betting on Soccer


In 1974 IG Index was formed to allow financial bettors to trade on the price of gold. Customers were mainly based in the City of London and IG provided a means to bet on the price of gold rather than buy the expensive commodity.

IG had the market to itself for several years but in the 1980s and 1990s other spread firms entered the industry. The concept still appealed most to financial traders and the markets offered were predominantly for commodities and indices.

In April 1992 Sporting Index was founded and this was the first company to focus on sports spread betting markets more than financials. Several other firms followed but Sporting Index dominated this area of betting and they still account for 70% of sports spread betting business.

Mathematics of Spread Betting


Sports that have a simple 1 point scoring system such as soccer, baseball and handball can be analysed using the Poisson and Skellam theories of statistics. Spread betting price compilers may not be aware that they are using these theories but spreads are based on the two concepts.

The Poisson distribution theory expresses the probability of an event happening over a certain period of time if there is a known average for this event to happen. If the average number of goals in a soccer match is known the potential range of results can be calculated.

The Skellam distribution theory is linked to the Poisson theory in that is used to calculate the potential result of an event when the Poisson distribution is known for the two variables for that event. If the Poisson value for two team’s supremacy in a soccer match is known the spread can be calculated.

The Make-Up of Spread Betting


The make-up is the key element of spread betting and is used to calculate the returns or losses for a bet. The more the make-up is greater than spread the greater the profits when buying (going high). The more the make-up is lower than the spread the greater the profits when selling (going low).

If the result of a soccer match is 2-2 the make-up is 4 (2 plus 2). If the result of a rugby match is 24-17 the make-up is 41 (24 plus 17). If one golfer takes 280 shots in a golf tournament and his opponent takes 287 shots the make-up is 7 (287 minus 280).

The make-up for an event is compared to the higher or lower end of the spread to calculate the profits and losses for buyers and seller respectively. In any spread two numbers are quoted which gives the operator a theoretical profit on that market.


Common Soccer Spread Betting Markets



Introduction to Soccer Spread Betting Markets


The amount of business on soccer spread betting reflects the popularity of the sport in terms of other forms of betting. Soccer betting accounts for about 50% of turnover for traditional bookmakers. It is by far the most popular betting sport and has now replaced horse racing as the sport that most people bet on through traditional means or online.

Live television coverage has a great effect on turnover for any sporting event. As little as 25 years ago in the United Kingdom there were no more than a handful of soccer matches shown live. The emergence of dedicated sports channels means many more live matches can be fitted into the schedules. Spread betting on soccer has grown in line with the number of matches shown live.

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Football Spread Betting Markets – Goal Supremacy


The bettor predicts the margin of victory for one side over another. This is a spread market involving a team’s dominance in terms of goals over the opposition. In a match with a clear favourite the spread is in effect a handicap on the favourites and is set to attract two way business on either side of the spread.

A typical spread for a soccer match is 1.3-1.5. The margin is generally 0.2 goals and this spread would equate to a side that are about 1/3 (1.33) to win a match. Bettors who think the favourites will by win by two clear goals will buy. Bettors who think the favourites will win by 1 goal, the teams will draw or the favourites lose will sell.

If the favourites win 3-1 the make-up is two. Buyers at 1.5 will win 0.5 by their stake. Sellers at 1.3 will lose 0.7 by their stake. If the favourites win 2-1 the make-up is one. Buyers lose 0.5 by their stake and sellers win 0.3 by the stake. In all cases returns and losses are calculated by the difference between the number at which the bet is placed and the make-up.


Football Spread Betting Markets - Total Goals


This market is based on the number of goals scored by both teams in a soccer match. Customers are betting on how many goals will be scored in a match, adding together the tallies for both sides.

A typical total goals spread would be 2.7-3.0 goals. The margin is generally 0.3 for this market. The make-up is calculated by totalling goals scored by each side so in a 2-2 draw the make-up is 4.

In the case of a match that produced four goals buyers at 3.0 would win 1 times their stake while sellers would lose 1.3 times their stake. In the case of a match that produced two goals buyers would lose 1 times their stake and sellers would win 0.7 times their stake.


Soccer Spread Betting Markets - Shirt Numbers


This market is based on the total number of shirt numbers for all the scorers in a match. This market is susceptible to significant variances from the spread. For example if a side buy a striker and the next available shirt number is say 26 the potential total for shirt numbers when he first plays for that side increase significantly.

A typical spread for shirt numbers is 41-44 and the margin is generally three points. The match ends 2-1 and the scorers are wearing number 7, 10 and 15 so the make-up is 32, that is the total of the numbers on the shirts worn by the goal scorers.

Buyers in the shirt numbers market lose 12 times their stake while sellers win 9 times their stake. The calculation is exactly the same as for goals supremacy and total goals in that it rewards those most who are more right and penalises those most who are more wrong.


Football Spread Betting Markets - Corners


This market concerns the total number of corners taken by both sides in a soccer match. The make-up is calculated by adding the number of corners won by the home side to the number of corners won by the away side. A typical spread would be 11-11.5 and the difference between the higher and lower figures is generally 0.5.

In an open game the corner count could reach 16 which is good news for the buyers but bad news for the sellers. Buyers win 4.5 times their stake while sellers lose 5 times their stake. A tight game with less than 11 corners means sellers win and buyers lose.


Soccer Spread Betting Markets - Bookings


In this market bettors are predicting the number of bookings and dismissals there will be in a game. For the purpose of calculating the make-up a yellow card is worth 10 points and a red card is worth 25 points. A typical bookings prediction would be 46-50 with the margin normally four points. For two yellow cards a player is awarded 35 points as this counts as a booking and sending-off.

In a match with three yellow cards and one red card the make-up is 55 (10 + 10 +10 +25). Buyers at 50 win 5 times their stake while sellers at 46 lose 9 times their stake. In a relatively clean game with few bookings sellers win and buyers lose, the extent to which is determined by the make-up.

In deciding whether to buy or sell bettors must consider each team’s disciplinary record and the referee’s tendency to book players or discipline them without showing a card. The nature of the bet means that a winning bet can soon become a losing bet if a confrontation between two players sees them both booked or one or both dismissed from the field.


Interested to learn more and give spread betting a go? Join SpreadEx today and take advantage for their fully loaded test account and when you are ready to go live, the will give you 200GBP in free spread bets!




Have you tried Spread Betting on Soccer? Are you interested but also wary of giving it a try? Let us know your spread betting experiences below





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